Congressional Store Tours: An Opportunity to Showcase Independent Community Grocers as the Cornerstones of America

May 21, 2021

By Molly Pfaffenroth, Senior Director of Government Relations, National Grocers Association

The National Grocers Association (NGA) this week launched its new branding identity — complete with a fresh logo, messaging, color scheme and tag line — the first update since NGA’s founding in 1982. NGA represents independent community grocers in every congressional district across the country, as well as their wholesaler partners. Each year, independent grocers account ​for one quarter of all annual grocery sales.

By advocating for the growth and continuing innovation of these community business leaders, NGA helps them bring choice, convenience and value to hard-working Americans. Rightfully so, NGA’s updated branding is built upon on its new tag line, “At the Heart of the Community.”

Communities across the country are beginning to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, thanks to grocery retailers and wholesalers that have been serving local communities for the past 14 months. These selfless “supermarket superheroes” have worked diligently on the front lines of the pandemic to ensure that families have had access to nutritious food, supplies, medicines and household products to endure this challenging and unprecedented time.

Now, more than ever, communities understand just how critical independent community grocers are to local economies. From the four corners of the grocery store to the four corners of the nation, independent community grocers are truly the heart of local communities.

Making the Independent Community Voice Heard

It was important that NGA’s new branding resonated with both Main Street and Congressional staff, and that NGA was set apart from other food industry organizations. NGA gathered feedback from Capitol Hill staffers on NGA’s presence in Washington, D.C. Here is some of what they had to say:

“At the end of the day, the independent grocers are the people in your communities, feeding your communities, and making your community better.”​ – Hill staffer​

“Localize that for us. ‘Hey, we work with the ranchers in your district to get meat from there and provide it to families in your state.’ Making it local is a big thing.”​ – Hill staffer 

As we look to the future of this essential industry, NGA’s updated brand is intended to convey – to every audience, from Main Street to Capitol Hill – the strength of its members and its unceasing commitment as an association to make sure their voices are heard.

Congressional Store Tours are an Opportunity to Showcase Grocers

With many public policy issues affecting independent community grocers, NGA members routinely host members of Congress for store tours. An in-person or virtual tour of a retail store or distribution center is a fantastic opportunity to provide a firsthand look at how the grocery industry operates and how federal issues have a very real impact on a business’ day-to-day operations.

NGA encourages its members to host their representatives and senators at their stores to showcase their critical service to local communities, as well as to discuss issues affecting the industry. NGA staff is happy to help set up these tours for our members. Interested retailers and wholesalers should contact Terence Huie at